This week’s Pokemon Presents live stream brought with it a single announcement focusing on the full duration of the event. The Pokemon Company announced a new game called Pokemon Unite. The MOBA team cooperative is being developed in cooperation with Tencent and Timi Studios, which was responsible for Call of Duty Mobile and Arena of Valor.
Unite will be free for Nintendo Switch and iOS / Android devices, and will support cross-platform play. A release date hasn’t been given yet, but we did analyze the game between two teams of celebrities, developers, and fans. It appears to be a more streamlined and accessible version of the genre and should be the perfect entry point for newcomers to MOBA. This is what we know so far.
How battles work
Matches are 5v5 and take place on a MOBA-like map divided into halves representing your teams. Each side is filled with various checkpoints that can be used to score goals. Battles will take place in real time. As you progress through battles, your Pokémon will level up and learn new moves, and each Pokémon has a unique Unite move. But unlike the standard Pokemon, there are no type perks. The team with the most points at the end of the game wins.
The live broadcast showed a debut match between two teams of five, complete with commentators. The action seemed wild and fast, with players vying for checkpoints to score goals. Tall grass is used to block vision and create opportunities for ambushes, and when you defeat a wild Pokémon, you “catch” it. All goals scored in the last minute are worth two points.
Variety of Pokemon generations
A select screen showed various popular monsters represented, including Pikachu, Snorlax, Charizard, and Lucario. In the match, some started out as non-evolved versions like Squirtle, which later evolved to Wartortle, though the selection screen only shows the final evolved form, Blastoise. Pikachu noticeably did not evolve into Raichu. Also, the evolutions don’t seem to include the so-called “baby” Pokémon, like Pichu or Munchlax.
We also saw some Pokémon represented on the battlefield like Bewear and Toxicroak, but since those weren’t on the selection screen, they may have been AI-controlled monsters. See below for a complete list of all the Pokémon we saw:
Player controlled Pokémon:
- Charmander / Charmeleon / Charizard
- Squirtle / Wartortle / Blastoise
- Clefairy * / Clefable
- Fletchling / Fletchinder / Talonflame
- Bulbasaur * / Ivysaur * / Venusaur
- Gastly * / Haunter * / Gengar
- Machop / Machoke * / Machamp
* (Not seen but assumed based on character selection and evolution)
Possible wild Pokémon:
- Stufful / Bewear
- Joltik / Galvantula
The news was shared on the Pokemon Presents live stream on June 24. This followed a similar event a week earlier, which brought in a variety of announcements, including those for New Pokemon Snap, Pokemon Cafe Mix, and new developments in Pokemon Sword & Shield and Pokemon Go.
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